Getting to Know Timothe Luwawu and Furkan Korkmaz

Timothe Luwawu was selected by the Philadelphia 76ers with the 24th pick in Thursday's NBA draft | Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Timothe Luwawu was selected by the Philadelphia 76ers with the 24th pick in Thursday’s NBA draft | Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

The selection of Ben Simmons with the 1st overall pick, a mere formality after a month of speculation, was the primary focus for Sixers fans after Thursday night’s NBA draft, and deservedly so. Simmons has the potential to develop into a franchise player, to make the Sixers truly relevant after a decade of being little more than an afterthought.

In addition to Simmons the Philadelphia 76ers added two more international prospects to their extended family, selecting French wing Timothe Luwawu with the 24th pick and Turkish shooting guard Furkan Korkmaz with the 26th selection in the draft.

The selections of Luwawu and Korkmaz were surprising for a number of reasons, not the least of which were because few, if any, analysts expected either to be available where the Sixers were drafting. It was also a surprise that president of basketball operations Bryan Colangelo elected to keep both picks. After spending weeks talking about how difficult it would be to keep both picks and develop as many young guys as the Sixers currently have on their roster, Colangelo recognized two talented players were falling and adjusted his course, despite the fact that both players have a desire to come stateside and play in the NBA, according to sources.

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Sixers Select Ben Simmons With First Overall Pick

BEN-SIMMONS-SIXERS-DRAFT--940X540

The Philadelphia 76ers made official what has long been expected: Ben Simmons is the first overall selection in the 2016 NBA draft.

Simmons has long been rumored to be the guy the Sixers were targeting after the team won May 17th’s NBA lottery. Simmons averaged 19.2 points, 11.8 rebounds, 4.8 assists, and 2.0 steals per game during his only season at LSU.

“I’m happy to be part of the family now. It’s a weight off my chest,” said Simmons after a selection that had become a foregone conclusion. “I’ve been looking forward to this day for a while, so I’m glad I’ve made history, not only for myself but my family and Australian basketball.”

Simmons grew up in Newcastle, Australia, before coming to the United States in 2013 to attend Montverde Academy in Montverde, Florida, the same school Joel Embiid attended. Simmons has another connection to the Sixers in head coach Brett Brown, who coached Simmons’ father, Dave, while in Australia.

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Report: Sixers Intensify Efforts to Acquire 3rd Pick, Nerlens Noel Could Be Moved

The Sixers are reportedly intensifying their efforts to acquire the 3rd overall pick from the Boston Celtics, and could select Providence point guard Kris Dunn if they are successful | Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

The Sixers are reportedly intensifying their efforts to acquire the 3rd overall pick from the Boston Celtics, and could select Providence point guard Kris Dunn if they are successful | Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

According to a report from Marc Stein of ESPN, the Philadelphia 76ers are the most active team involved in trade discussions, while adding that the Sixers are ramping up their efforts to acquire the third overall pick from Boston.

According to Stein, a trade involving Nerlens Noel is becoming more and more likely. Stein also adds that if the Sixers do acquire the 3rd overall pick, they would be selecting between Buddy Hield, Kris Dunn, or Jamal Murray.

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2016 NBA Draft Big Board: What Should the Sixers do with the #1 Pick?

LSU's Ben Simmons.

LSU’s Ben Simmons.

This is it. This is the moment Sixers fans have been waiting three years for, the day they get to unwrap their new franchise player.

As we head into the draft, the drama at the top is gone. Ben Simmons is almost guaranteed to be a Philadelphia 76er later tonight.

Yet there’s still a considerable amount of interest for Sixers fans beyond that point, not only because the Sixers have the 24th and 26th picks (for now) in the draft as well, but because Bryan Colangelo is actively looking to acquire another top-8 pick. Who could, and should, he be targeting with a second high draft pick? My rankings on that are below.

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76ers Draft: Is Kris Dunn a Fit with Ben Simmons?

Is Kris Dunn a fit with Ben Simmons and the Sixers? | Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Is Kris Dunn a fit with Ben Simmons and the Sixers? | Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

We continue our draft series, looking at a couple of players the Sixers could target in Thursday night’s NBA draft.

One player who has come up in conversations of late is Providence point guard Kris Dunn, with reports out of CSN New England that the Sixers are enamored with Dunn. Is he somebody that they should pursue?

Age: 22

Measurements: 6-foot-4.25-inches (in shoes), 205 pounds, 6-foot-9.5-inch wingspan.

Stats: 16.4 points, 5.3 rebounds, 6.2 assists, 2.5 steals, 3.5 turnovers per game, shot 44.8 percent from the field and 37.2 percent from three-point range.

Advanced stats: 11.3 Boxscore plus/minus, (5.6 offensive, 5.7 defensive), 4.5 win shares (2.2 offensive, 2.3 defensive), 0.166 win shares/40 minutes, 46.2 percent free throw rate, 54.1 percent true shooting.

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Joel Embiid Cleared to Begin Scrimmaging

Joel Embiid practices before the Sixers played the Los Angeles Clippers on February 8th, 2016 | Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Sixers center Joel Embiid has reportedly been cleared to start participating in “light” 5-on-5 scrimmages | Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

According to a report from Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports’ “The Vertical”, Sixers center Joel Embiid has been cleared to start participating in “light” scrimmaging in 5-on-5 settings.

Embiid, 22, was selected by the Sixers third overall in the 2014 NBA draft just days after undergoing surgery to repair a fracture in the navicular bone in his right foot.

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Ben Simmons Works Out for 76ers, Reportedly Told He Will Be Selected No. 1

The Sixers would likely decide between Ben Simmons (pictured) or Brandon Ingram if they win May 17th's lottery | Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

Ben Simmons worked out for the Philadelphia 76ers today, and has reportedly been told he will be selected with the first pick. | Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

After much debate, it turns out Ben Simmons has, in fact, worked out for the Philadelphia 76ers.

“This morning we did have an opportunity, very early, to have Ben Simmons come in and work out,” Sixers president of basketball operations Bryan Colangelo told reporters today at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine. “[The workout] was important for us, and we were excited to be able to get the opportunity. I think it also speaks to the fact that Ben [Simmons] and his representatives wanted to make sure that we were aware they wanted to be the #1 pick and would like to be considered here in Philadelphia.”

According to Chris Haynes of Cleveland.com, the Sixers have informed Simmons’ camp that he will be selected #1 in Thursday’s NBA draft.

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76ers Draft: Is Jamal Murray the Draft’s Best Shooter?

Kentucky's Jamal Murray could be an option if the Sixers acquire another top-5 draft pick in Thursday's NBA draft | Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

Kentucky’s Jamal Murray could be an option if the Sixers acquire another top-5 draft pick in Thursday’s NBA draft | Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

With the 76ers draft just a few days away, we’ll take a look at a couple of prospects the Sixers could end up walking away with on Thursday night.

In Jamal Murray‘s case, the interest would likely stem from a trade, as he’s unlikely to be, and shouldn’t be, in consideration for the #1 pick.

Age: 19

Measurements: 6-foot-4.25-inches (in shoes), 207 pounds, 6-foot-6.5-inch wingspan.

Stats: 20.0 points, 5.2 rebounds, 2.2 assists per game, shot 45.5 percent from the field and 40.8 percent from three-point range.

Advanced stats: 9.1 Boxscore plus/minus, (8.1 offensive, 1.1 defensive), 6.1 win shares (4.4 offensive, 1.7 defensive), 0.194 win shares/40 minutes, 28.3 percent free throw rate, 59.0 percent true shooting.

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It’s Been 15,000 Days Since the Flyers Won the Stanley Cup

15,000 days since the last Flyers Stanley Cup logo

Image made by @BackhandedDevil

Last night, the Cleveland Cavaliers won the NBA Championship. It was Cleveland’s first major pro sports championship since 1964 — a 52-year gap since its last championship.

Philadelphia is no longer “cursed” since its victory in the 2008 World Series. But the city’s other teams are really starting to get into long droughts. The Eagles have never won a Super Bowl, and their last NFL Championship was in 1960. The Sixers haven’t won a title since 1983.

The Flyers’ drought now stands at 41 years; their last Stanley Cup was in 1975. And, as Twitter account @SinceFlyersCup notes, today marks 15,000 days since the Flyers last won the Stanley Cup. Read more »

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